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Similar to most creative efforts, our team of Architects, Engineers, Contractors, and Builders began the design process for INFLUENCE by first collecting a common vision for the piece. After considerable effort, we decided upon the following guiding principles to guide us as we developed our installation proposal:
“A provocative, experimental piece that addresses equity and access. To do so, our installation shall direct participants to interact within an environment of sensorial disruption and forces them to find a new harmony with their surroundings.”
As proposed, INFLUENCE is composed of 4 primary elements: a sinuous steel structural loop with a circular plan and undulating section; a resinous loop that closely follows the primary structure but is connected to it by rotational pins so as to be allowed to move and bend; a cable + fabric net connected to the resinous loop for people to climb upon (and thusly deform the structure); a steel central oculus to both hold the piece together and to provide a clear moment for people to sit and to activate the piece; finally, a mirrored fabric sheet, concealed between the primary and secondary outer loops that is only revealed through the transformative interaction of people with the piece itself.
Some key components of the piece:
• Neutral State – at rest the installation is open and inviting, playful in the form to welcome people inside. While open and intriguing to visitors, their participation reveals a surprise reaction in the piece itself.
• Activated State – It requires interaction to activate (applying force, pushing or laying down against fabric, amplified towards the center) which generates both a formal and spatial/environmental transformation.
• Modularity – the skin and frame of the piece are modular and can be easily assembled. Looks complicated, really isn’t – structure and form as metaphor for finding balance.
• Oculus – the singularity of an aperture type opening is integral to the tensile fabric surface but can be accessed from below, highlighting the outsize transformative weight the center embodies in the piece.
Special thanks to GR Plume and Columbia Steel Services.